Fukushima: Speech by 15 year old Kokoro Fujinami

This video is a speech by Miss Kokoro Fujinami at an anti-nuke rally at Yoyogi Park in Tokyo on February 11, 2012, where approximately 12,000 people participated.

(Translated by Caitlin Stronnel)

Hello everyone, I’m Kokoro Fujinami.

It’s been almost a year since the Great Eastern Japan Earthquake. My values have changed so much over this year.

Even though this nuclear accident will go down in human history as a major disaster, the government and the media are trying to portray it as nothing important. Even though they haven’t done very much testing, in order to protect the economy, the government adjusts safety standards to ridiculously low levels. They run irresponsible campaigns urging us to support Fukushima by eating produce from there, totally ignoring the sanctity of human lives. I think this is very scary and I am disappointed that Japan has come to this.
I think we all stand at a crucial point in Japan’s history. In this small country, where earthquakes are so common, by the time we realized, 54 nuclear reactors had been built. These are not symbols of prosperity, they are time bombs. If there was another earthquake and another nuclear reactor blew up, this time, it really would be the end for Japan. I absolutely refuse to spend my life with a ticking time bomb not knowing when it’s going to blow up.

The beautiful mountains and rivers, the sea and villages, the delicious treasures of the mountains and the sea…whatever happens, we MUST NOT let loose another Fukushima in our homeland.

We are such a small life-form in the entirety of time… however you look at it, we will never be able to defeat the Earth’s nature. Just because science has advanced, it is a huge mistake to think that we can then control everything. We must live within nature, we can never go beyond it. Making all these nuclear reactors in such an earthquake-prone place is sheer arrogance of men making fun of Mother Nature.

It wasn’t that nuclear power was supporting us, somehow, without really knowing it, we were supporting nuclear power. People often say that we need nuclear power to fuel the economy, but right now it seems to me as if it is nuclear power that has destroyed the economy. Right now, the time has come to re-think what we actually mean by ‘happiness’ or ‘wealth.’ In the end, the people who always bear the brunt are the regular citizens, the vulnerable, the children.

Friends, the strength of each of you, when added together, becomes a huge strength. Please, protect the future of the children.

Towards the end of her speech, Kokoro sings a song called “Furusato” in the video. It has become a kind of anthem to all the people who can’t go back home and is often sung these days in connection to Fukushima.

Here is the lyrics, translated by Caitlin Stronnel:


Usagi oishi ka no yama
Kobuna tsurishi ka no kawa
Yume wa ima mo megurite
Wasuregataki, furusato

Ikani imasu chichi haha
Tsutsuga nashiya tomogaki
Ame ni kaze ni tsuketemo
Omoi izuru furusato

Kokorozashi wo hatashite
Itsu no hi ni ka kaeran
Yama wa aoki, furusato
Mizu wa kiyoki, furusato

I chased rabbits on that mountain
I fished for minnows in that stream
How I miss and long for my old country home

How are Mum and Dad, I wonder?
And all my old friends?
When the rain falls,
When the wind blows, I recall
My happy childhood and my old country home

Some day, when I have done what I set out to do,
I will return to the
Lush green mountains
And the pure clear water…of my old country home



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